CROATIA: SEEMO concerned at arrest of Croatia journalist

CROATIA, CROATIA, 23/01/2013, 07:45

The South East Europe Media Organisation (SEEMO), a network of editors, media executives and leading journalists from South East Europe and an affiliate of the International Press Institute (IPI), is shocked  at  the detention of Croatian journalist Jasna Babic, sued by a businessman for libel.

Jasna Babic has been held in Zagreb’s Remetinec prison since 22 January 2013, and could spend a maximum of 30 days there, if the court deems this necessary to ensure she appears at a trial - the date of which has yet to be set.  The court defended its decision saying she had already failed to appear at 16 previous hearings and described her imprisonment as „disciplinary detention".

"I am asking the Croatian authorities to immediately release Jasna Babic", said Oliver Vujovic, SEEMO Secretary General.  "I hope this will happen today and that Babic will again be free. To use detention as disciplinary instrument in a libel case is not acceptable. Babic, a famous investigative journalist, was arrested and treated like a criminal.”

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